Harwich Town Council

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Missing lifebelts put lives at risk

Tendring District Council (TDC) has seen a spate of lifebelts, vital lifesaving equipment going missing in the last few weeks.

The orange lifebelts, which each cost around £60 to replace have gone missing and presumed stolen, with Dovercourt the worst affected area.

The Council has over 80 lifebelt stations along the entire stretch of the Tendring coastline. The rings are used by TDC’s beach patrol and members of the public if a person gets into difficulty in the sea.

Cllr Alex Porter, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Tourism at TDC, said he is shocked that anyone would steal lifebelts which are potential lifesavers.

“We take coastal safety very seriously, you never know when a lifebelt might be needed by someone who may get into difficulty in the sea.”

“This is why lifebelts are stationed at regular intervals along the coast and we make sure that they are maintained on their station, it is not acceptable that some people think that stealing them is an ok thing to do. They cost tax payers money to replace and removing them could create a life threating situation.”

“It is a criminal offence to tamper with this equipment and the Council will press for a prosecution if there is the evidence available.”